Candide Books & Cafe
Tanisorn Vongsoontorn/Time Out Bangkok

6 best independent bookstores in Bangkok

These offbeat shops will make you fall in love with books a little bit more.

Written by
Arpiwach Supateerawanitt
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In a world where the written word has gone digital, the one habit that we hold on to is reading an actual book. Its tactile feel, the sweet smell when you turn a page—book lovers can’t help but be addicted. E-books may have started a revolution but real books are still here to uphold the old guard. 

Here are some independent bookstores where you can indulge your bibliophilia. Each one has an impressive collection of books and its own unique charm.

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  • Dusit

An old cat lounges on a shelf, a chillax song plays in the background, patrons softly engage in conversation. A Book With No Name is not just a bookstore; it’s a gathering place for book lovers and like-minded individuals. A small bar serves hot drinks like its signature Espresso Nutella (B80), and cold beers are also available.

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  • Charoennakhon

Books, coffee and greenery. That does sound like heaven. Candide Books allows you to walk around and enjoy the thrill of finding a new book, then have some coffee or stroll in its large garden. 

The shop focuses on Thai books from independent publishers and translated titles. You can also chance upon books that are rarely found in other bookstores. Once in a while, it hosts live jazz and classical music performances. For introverts and lazybones, Candide Books has an online store where you easily have a book delivered straight to your front door.

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  • Sukhumvit 26

Have you ever tried to buy a good book only to find that it’s sold out everywhere? Here’s a tip: try to find it secondhand. Dasa sells pre-loved, English-language books by foreign authors in friendly prices. They even have old children’s books and rare fictions. 

Browsing the store feels like going back in time, when you would hunt down treasures in your school library. Dasa also has a little café where you can have a cup of coffee while you peruse through your precious finds.

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  • Rattanakosin

Tall shelves displaying postcards guard the entrance. Inside, books tightly line the walls of this cozy bookstore. A variety of titles are waiting to be discovered. You can select a book from the first floor and read it one floor up where you have small tables, a smattering of chairs and more books. 

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  • Rattanakosin

This old, charming wooden house on the peaceful Mahannop Street near the Giant Swing in the old part of Bangkok is the city's newest hotspot for aspiring globetrotters. The house has been converted into a lovely bookstore, inviting readers to “travel” the world through a collection of books that reflects the many facets of different cultures.

 

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  • Huai Khwang

This three-story bookshop was built to bring joy to those who want more from their bookstore. Zombie Books also houses a co-working space on the second floor and a bar on the third. The first floor is dedicated to a display of various Thai and translated literatures.

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